For senior managers and consultants in recruitment, starting and growing an independent agency is a unique and life-changing financial opportunity – a gift from the industry that many ‘fell into’.
Careers in recruitment tend to follow a predictable path:
- Consultants ‘fall into’ the industry at a young age, unsure of which career to choose, and attracted by the high energy, fast career development and potential for accelerated earnings
- Several years later, top performers are out-earning their peers in other career sectors and flying high…
- Soon, however, professional contacts in other areas start to catch up and overtake, and the steep upward curve of recruitment earnings flattens off
- Recruiters look at the next 5-10 years of their lives (their financial ambitions, their lifestyle goals, their families), and wonder ‘what’s next?’
For some, this is the end of the road – a dead-end of frustration and stagnation that lingers on, stuck between uninspiring job switches to ‘do it again for someone else’ in the recruitment sector, or taking a big backward step to begin a career outside the industry.
For others, however, there’s a third path – to take their expertise and their market knowledge, and to build their own business from the ground up.
It’s usually a huge risk to start a company, with a high probability of failure and very significant financial risk (along with massive pressure).
Successful CEO’s and founders in other markets are 1 in 1,000 – a rare breed of multi-talented expert mastering product knowledge, finance, marketing, sales and strategy…
But the recruitment industry is different – starting an agency (for an experienced recruiter) is one of the most accessible ways to create significant personal wealth, with an exceptionally low level of risk in many cases.
To start and run other types of companies, you need big resources: capital investment, multi-skilled teams, distribution frameworks, expensive premises, regulatory and compliance hurdles, complex go-to-market strategies, complicated financial plans and (riskiest of all) slow sales cycles and uncertain paths to profitability.
None of these barriers exist for recruitment business.
In general, recruitment ventures are:
- Financially accessible
Founders require a very small amount of initial capital, which can either be drawn from personal savings or financed by external investors while leaving founders as comfortable majority shareholders.
For most founders, start-up capital required rarely exceeds more than a few placements!
- Low risk of failure
Recruiters who know their markets and are able to focus successfully on generating initial traction can quickly become cashflow positive and start scaling their firms. Over 80% of recent founders on the RecruitHub platform have billed within 60 days of launch – some within weeks.
In a worst-case scenario, founders can always return to a career in recruitment – one of the most talent-hungry markets in recent memory – sure to produce plenty of competitive offers.
- Clear goals & financial returns
Pricing, sales performance, overheads and staff costs are straightforward to predict in the recruitment sector, allowing the development of detailed 5-year P&L forecasts which show founders exactly how much they can expect to earn in their first few years of trading, together with how the value of the business they own can increase over time.
- Earn, control & invest
Unlike other investment options (e.g. stocks, crypto or real estate) where founders tie up cash in third-party corporations or investment vehicles, running a recruitment business allows founders to:
a) fully control the performance, success and value of their asset, and
b) earn strongly in the short-term through the fees they generate.
Though many recruiters look back on their careers and feel glad that they ‘fell into’ a sector that has allowed them to earn great commissions, meet awesome colleagues and have a lot of fun – only a few go on to realise that it’s only the first part of a potentially life-changing journey.
They’ve not just fallen into recruitment – they’ve fallen into a virtually unequalled opportunity to keep scaling up their personal wealth, by reinvesting their expertise into a business asset that builds perfectly on their career – taking their financial journey to the next level with a phenomenally low degree of risk compared to virtually any other entrepreneurial endeavour.